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John Innes seed compost

I have used JI seed compost this year and have not had much success at all. I have found it to be very heavy and cloddy and not open and loose - the kind of medium that would enable fragile seeds to germinate. I have only got 2 tomato  plants from a dozen seeds sowed(6 marmande and 6 sweet million) and they are only small and appear to have stopped growing. I have a greenhouse and heated mat so they aren't too cold. Usually they all germinate for me when I use Humax compost which is a lot 'lighter'. What do others use? 
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Posts

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 21,140
    I don’t like any seed compost, never use it, just use a multi purpose.
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 8,874
    I've tried a few seed composts recently and they've all been terrible. You can improve them by sieving though which gets the lumps out and lightens it up nicely.
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,868
    I generally use 50:50 seed and MPC
  • punkdocpunkdoc Sheffield, Derbyshire border.Posts: 13,027
    I have stopped using it for the same reason.
    Just use MPC too.
    There are ashtrays of emulsion,
    for the fag ends of the aristocracy.
  • Singing GardenerSinging Gardener EssexPosts: 1,214
    Last year I sowed half my seeds in JI seed compost and half in multi-purpose and the MPC ones did way better so am not going to get seed compost any more.
  • inns by westlands, was changed a 2-3yrs back. During the early austerity period, before then. It was nice and sandy, light and very good high drainage. Since the money saving period, like you say very claggy and sticky wet. Not nice at all, and very little horti sand in it, and no pre furtilized either nowadays. I shifted to a lighter mix, pre fertilized, and perlite already in. Gold Label 'Special Mix"...... is a great germination medium. High flow drainage. At 30p litre you can complain.... specialist suppliers will post the compressed bags no issues. 
  • cowslip2cowslip2 Posts: 137
    Gardeninglily1, I bought JI in early spring, and found it as you described. Bags I purchased weeks later was perfect. The first came from a small nursery, where they were still selling last years supply. I had no complaint when next I bought from a garden centre, which had just had delivery of fresh, and perfect J. I.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,240
    edited May 2018
    For quick germinating seeds I use sieved MPC.

    For seeds that are going to over-winter in a seed tray I use 50:50 JI seed compost and MPC.
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • PurplerainPurplerain Posts: 1,053
    I use JI seed compost, but add fine vermiculite and horticultural sand. My seedlings all germinated quite well, but they are slow this year and many of them won't be ready for June. I put it down to the sustained cold weather we have had until recently.
    SW Scotland
  • PurplerainPurplerain Posts: 1,053
    I use JI seed compost, but add fine vermiculite and horticultural sand. My seedlings all germinated quite well, but they are slow this year and many of them won't be ready for June. I put it down to the sustained cold weather we have had until recently.
    SW Scotland
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